Faculty of Gerontology

Dr. Poon Image

Leonard W. Poon, Ph.D.

B.S. Engineering, San Jose State University, 1966

Ph.D., Experimental Psychology, University of Denver, 1972

Postdoctoral Fellowship, Psychophysiology, Neuropsychology, Aging, Duke University Center for the Study of Aging & Human Development, 1972-74.

Philosophiae Doctorem Honoris Causa, Lund University, Sweden, 2000

Office: Institute of Gerontology, College of Public Health, 255 E. Hancock Avenue, Athens GA 30602-5775
Ph: (706) 425-3222
Fax: (706) 425-3221
Email: lpoon@geron.uga.edu

Research Interests

Dr. Poon has research programs which are directed towards several major issues in gerontology. His primary research area funded by NIMH and NIA since 1988 is focused on survival and longevity of the oldest old, the Georgia Centenarian Study. The current NIA-funded program project focuses on genetics, neuropathology, functional capacity, and successful adaptation of centenarians. Faculty researchers, graduate students, and postdoctoral fellows from nine universities participate in this program project. He also directs in the last 12 years the 7-country International Centenarian Consortium which collaborates on cross cultural studies. His other current research interests focus on public health and older adults as well as a HRSA-funded Geriatric Education Center in partnership with the Emory University Geriatric Medicine and the Armstrong Atlantic State University College of Health Professions. This project is charged to elevate geriatric education for health professionals throughout the state of Georgia . His other funded project by the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia is on distance education partnership in gerontology. This project is charged to coordinate distance education, annual student mentorship conferences in the southeast, master teacher series, and seed grants for faculty and students in gerontology. He has a continuous research and interest on cognitive aging. His research includes every-day memory processes in the elderly, cognition and speed of behavior in older adults, clinical memory assessment, cognition in and survivorship of the oldest-old, as well as specific changes that occur in cognitive systems with Alzheimer's disease. Dr. Poon is past president of the Division of Adult Development and Aging of the American Psychological Association and past chair of the Behavioral and Social Science Section of the Gerontological Society of America. He was a member of NIH's Human Development and Aging Study Section and has chaired NIMH's Clinical Centers and Special Review Committee. His research is funded by NIA, NIMH, and the AARP Andrus Foundation.

Selected Publications (1980 - present)

A. Assessment of Older Adults.

Poon, L. W., Gurland, B., Eisdorfer, C., Crook, T., Thompson, L. W. , Kaszniak, A., & Davis, K. (Eds.). (1986). Handbook for clinical memory assessment of older adults. Washington , DC : American Psychological Association.

Poon, L. W., Fozard, J. L. , Cermak, L. S. , Arenberg, D., & Thompson, L. W. (Eds.). (1980). New directions in memory and aging: Proceedings of the George A Talland Memorial Conference. Hillsdale , NJ : Lawrence Erlbaum Assoc.

Poon, L. W., Rubin, D., & Wilson, B. (Eds.). (1989). Everyday cognition in adulthood and late life. NY: Cambridge University Press.

Erickson, R. C., Poon, L. W., & Walsh-Sweeney, L. (1980). Clinical memory testing of the elderly. In L. W. Poon, J. L. Fozard, L. S. Cermak, D. Arenberg, & L. W. Thompson (Eds.), New directions in memory and aging: Proceedings of the George A Talland Memorial Conference (pp. 379-402). Hillsdale , NJ : Lawrence Erlbaum Assoc.

Poon, L. W.(1983). Application of information processing technology in psychological assessment. In T. Crook, S. Ferris & R. Bartus (Eds.), Assessment in geriatric psychopharmacology (pp. 187-201). New Canaan , CT : Mark Powly Associates.

Poon, L. W. (1985). Differences in human memory with aging: Nature, causes and clinical implications. In J.E. Birren & K.W. Shaie (Eds.), Handbook of the psychology of aging (pp. 427-455). NY: Van Nostrand Reinhold.

Poon, L. W. (1989). Psychological and cognitive factors in psychogeriatric memory assessment. In M. Bergener and B. Reisberg (Eds.), Diagnosis and treatment of senile dementia (pp. 129-141). Heidelberg : Springer-Verlag.

B. Intervention with Older Adults.

Poon, L. W., Walsh-Sweeney, L., & Fozard, J. L. (1980). Memory skill training for the elderly: Salient issues on the use of imagery mnemonics. In L. W. Poon, J. L. Fozard, L. S. Cermak, D. Arenberg, & L. W. Thompson, (Eds.), New directions in memory and aging: Proceedings of the George A Talland Memorial Conference (pp. 461-484). Hillsdale , NJ : Lawrence Erlbaum Assoc.

Poon, L. W. (1984). Memory training for older adults. In J. Abrahams, & V. Crooks (Eds.), Geriatric mental health: A clinician's guide (pp. 135-151). NY: Grune & Stratton.

Poon, L. W. (1989). The translation of laboratory findings in cognitive aging to clinical application. In GC Gilmore, P Whitehouse & M Wykle (Eds.), Memory, aging, and dementia: Theory, assessment, and treatment (pp. 99-111). NY: Springer Publishing Company.

Poon, L. W., Fozard, J. L., & Treat, N. J. (1978). From clinical and research findings to intervention programs. Experimental Aging Research, 4, 235-254.

C. Functioning Among Frail Elders.

Poon, L. W. (Ed.). (1992). The Georgia Centenarian Study [Special issue]. International Journal of Aging and Human Development, 34(1).

Hagberg, B., Alfredson, B.B., Poon, L.W., & Homma, A. (2001) Cognitive functioning in centenarians: A coordinated analysis of results from three countries. Journal of Gerontology: Psychological Sciences, Vol. 56B, 3, pg. 141-151.

Martin, P., Poon, L. W., Kim, E, & Johnson, M. A. (1996). Social and psychological resources in the oldest old. Experimental Aging Research, 22, 121-139.

Poon, L. W., Clayton, G. M., Martin, P., Johnson, M. A., Courtenay, B. C, Sweaney, A., Merriam, S. B., Pless, B. S., & Thielman, S. B. (1992). The Georgia Centenarian Study. International Journal of Aging and Human Development, 34 (1), 1-18.

Poon, L. W., Martin, P., Clayton, G. M., Messner, S., & Noble, C. A. (1992). The influences of cognitive resources on adaptation and old age. International Journal of Aging and Human Development, 34(1), 31-46.

Poon, L. W. (1992). Ode to three wise men. International Journal of Aging and Human Development, 34(1), 87-89.

Poon, L. W. (1992). Toward an understanding of cognitive function in geriatric depression. [Special Research Award Issue]. International Psychogeriatrics, 4(2), 241-266.

Martin, P., Poon, L. W., Kim, E, & Johnson, M. A. (1996). Social and psychological resources in the oldest old. Experimental Aging Research, 22, 121-139.

Martin, P., Rott, C., Poon, L. W., Courtenay, B., & Lehr, U. (2001). A molecular view of coping behavior in older adults. J Aging Health, 13(1), 72-91.

Loeb, S.J, Penrod, J., Falkenstern, S., Gueldner, S.H., & Poon, L.W. (2003) Supporting older adults living with multiple chronic conditions. Western Journal of Nursing Research, 25(1), 8-29.

Jang, Y., Poon, L.W., & Martin, P. (2004) Individual Differences in the Effects of Disease and Disability on Depressive Symptoms: The Role of Age and Subjective Health. International Journal of Aging and Human Development, 59, 125-137.

Falkenstern, S., Loeb, S., Gueldner, S., Penrod, J., & Poon, L. (2005). Health Care Providers' Perspectives: Estimating the Impact of Chronicity, Journal of the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners, 17, 5, 194-199.

D. Sampling Issues With Older Populations.

Poon, L. W., Krauss, I. , & Bowles, N. L. (1984). On subject selection in cognitive aging research. Experimental Aging Research, 10, 43-49.

E. Publication list associated with the Georgia Centenarian Study: http://www.geron.uga.edu/research/Publications.php

Selected Professional Activities

Elected Fellow of:

Senior Fulbright Research Scholar (Sweden)

Senior Visiting Research Scientist (Japan)

President of Jury, the Ipsen Longevity Prize (Paris)

Executive Director, International Centenarian Consortium

Courses Regularly Taught

PSYC 6700 or GRNT 6700: Psychology of Aging

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